Since there is a veritable feast of new television coming in the next week, it seemed like as good a time as any to break down the changes to the schedule, day by day. Here is what's coming up in the next couple of weeks ...
Monday, August 13
Get ready for an influx of overly emotional moments set to Snow Patrol-esque music! Grey's Anatomy and Private Practice are back for new seasons, their eighth and fifth seasons respectively (TV2, 8.30pm and 9.30pm) - not my cup of tea, but I'm sure there are plenty who'll be happy with this news. For the more discerning viewer, Aaron Sorkin's much talked about new show The Newsroom begins with a pilot that drew mixed reviews from critics overseas (SoHo, 8.30pm); I'll be talking about it here, tomorrow.
Tuesday, August 14
Local reality TV is back with new seasons of fly-on-the-wall doco Coastwatch (One, 7.30pm) and surprisingly interesting What's Really in Our Food (TV3, 7.30pm). Later, British supernatural series The Fades wraps up a brilliant first season - sadly, it doesn't appear that it will be back for a second (UKTV, 9.20pm).
Wednesday, August 15
Did we ever figure out how to classify Deadliest Catch? Docu-thriller? Action-mentary? Either way, its back for its eighth season (Discovery, 7.30pm). Meanwhile, TV2 is bringing out a new batch of comedies - Hot in Cleveland is back with its second season (TV2, 8.pm), Charlie Sheen is back in an intriguing new series, Anger Management (TV2, 8.30pm), and Courteney Cox leads the cast of curiously-named comedy Cougar Town (TV2, 9pm).
Thursday, August 16
We're a few years behind, but Rescue Me returns for its sixth season (SoHo, 7.30pm). Gypsies continue to dominate the Thursday schedule, with The Big Gypsy Eviction (One, 8.30pm) following their removal from Dale Farm. If that's not your thing, Prime has the first of a two-part documentary about New Zealand's Paralympics team, Black & White (Prime, 8.30pm), followed by the second-half of True Blood's fifth season (Prime, 9.35pm).
Friday, August 17
The origins of conflicts between Israel and Palestine are explored in four-part British series The Promise (SoHo, 8.30pm), while Who Do You Think You Are USA starts up (Prime, 8.30pm). By the way, if you aren't watching it, Jono & Ben at Ten is surprisingly good, and improving every week - some of the complaints about content being derived from the web might be valid, but that doesn't mean you can't have a good laugh (TV3, 10pm).
Saturday, August 18/Sunday, August 19
Rising like a phoenix from the ashes of TVNZ 7, the Russell Brown-hosted Media3 started over the past weekend and is well worth your time (TV3, Saturdays at 10.30am - also repeated on Sunday nights). Since we don't already have enough second-rate reality shows on the schedule, Fear Factor (TV2, Saturday at 7.30pm), The Real Housewives of Orange County (Four, Saturday at 8.30pm), Mary Queen of Frocks (Vibe, Sunday at 8.30pm) and Gok Wan: Made in China (Living, Sunday at 9pm) are here to make sure reality fans are satisfied.
Next Week, August 20-24 ... and beyond
A few shows of note: Gordon Ramsay is back in two more timeslots with Masterchef USA (Prime, next Monday at 8.30pm) and Ramsay's Best Restaurant (One, next Wednesday at 8.30pm), Jaquie Brown hits screens to chronicle parenthood in Keep Calm & Carry On (One, next Wednesday at 8pm), and hit web series Auckland Daze gets a run on broadcast telly (One, next Thursday at 10.10pm) - I'd be more excited about that last one if a) it wasn't a year old, b) I hadn't seen it already, and c) TVNZ decided to pull Episodes mid-season to air it. Beyond that, look for new seasons of Hell on Wheels (Soho, starting August 26) and Boss (SoHo, startting September 1)
What are you looking forward to in the next couple of weeks?
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